I just had to share this illustration that I saw published in the recent issue of Uppercase Magazine (Issue #55). Janine Vangool (Publisher, Editor & Designer) showcases artists, designers and illustrators from around the world in her special and unique publication. Each issue provides inspiring stories and introduces readers to many talented and creative individuals.
Virginia Das Neves, is based in Sydney, Australia and has a varied background in Archaeology, Fine Art, Photography, and Textile Design. She shares that "Lifeblood is a mashup illustration created to express my experience during the initial pandemic in 2020. I lost my job, and my sewing machine essentially became my lifeblood. As a lifelong textile designer and maker, I found solace but also much-needed income after losing my job."
Das Neves created a rough pencil sketch of her old Necchi sewing machine. "At a time when I lost my sewing job, making things at home to earn a small income was all I could do during extended lockdowns. Sewing became my lifeblood in a sense."
In this illustration, "the anatomical heart symbolizes my love of creating, but also the idea of the veins becoming the life-giving thread. So this illustration has a much deeper meaning for me than the 30 odd hours it took me to draw it. The pattern on the piece of fabric is one of my own textile designs. The final illustration was created using Adobe Illustrator from my original pencil sketches."
"I hope to inspire women who are 50 and above, that it is never too late to follow a long-held dream to enter into another field and to challenge yourself to start at the bottom again." ~Virginia Das Neves
When I requested permission to share her artwork here, Virginia responded in the most positive way. She would be delighted to have me share her illustration on my blog. She was happy that I was able to save my sewing machine because, she wrote, "I know the attachment we sewists have to our machines. I have spent many hours in bliss just sewing away in my studio. When you make something you enjoy creating, nothing can beat it. Especially when you have a great machine! Mine could go through thick fabric and leather...I felt like I could conquer anything if my sewing machine could stitch through the thickness of fabrics I threw at her! Only a fellow sewist can understand that feeling, right?"
Kudos to Virginia Das Neves for her creativity in re-inventing, re-imagining and realizing how sewing would allow her to remain relevant in a changing world. I plan on cutting out the article from Uppecase magazine and displaying it in my studio to serve as inspiration. I shared with Virginia that after we move in, it will take some time for me to decide if my sewing room will be a multi-use room where I will continue to sew and quilt. Maybe now is the time to challenge myself to finish the writing project I started a few years ago and share some of my short stories in this space. My special thanks to Virgina Das Neves for her encouragement and inspiration.
I'm wondering, has someone's creative work resonated with you recently?